How will my grandchildren remember me?
I love my grandchildren and love being around them. That’s no big secret to anyone who regularly reads my columns and I am not any different from most of you that have the blessing of grandchildren.
The fact that my grandchildren live nearby, in Dothan and Bainbridge, is just an unexpected treat. I try to get to every event that comes their way, although it is not as often as I would like.
Saturday I had the opportunity to first attend a soccer game for Henry and later a dance recital for Laura. That is about as different as children’s activities get. I am learning about both as I never played soccer and certainly never was in a dance recital.
Henry’s team is made up of 6, 7 and 8 year old kids. At this age, the girls often grow faster than the boys and are some of the best athletes. Henry is one of the youngest, but he loves to run and be in the thick of the action. You don’t have to know every rule about soccer to know they are having a ball.
I find myself cheering as loud as if I were watching Auburn at the SEC Championship. The other parents are cheering them on, but it appears that the grandparents in the crowd are some of the loudest. I am no longer just going to watch Henry. The games are actually fun to watch and I look forward to being there.
At six that same evening (that’s seven p.m. here in Georgia), Mary Lou and I were scheduled to attend Laura’s first dance recital. I was a little hesitant when I heard that it might last two and a half hours. Laura’s time on stage – less than five minutes.
The recital was held at the Dothan Civic Center. I was still thinking it could not really last over two hours when we drove up to the Civic Center. Then I saw the line was stretched out the doors into the parking lot. It was still over an hour before the show began.
We made it to the fifth row, thanks to my daughter saving us a seat. We then settled in to await the first act. The program was twenty pages long and included forty nine different groups or individuals performing. It was then that I realized they weren’t pulling my leg; this recital might really last over two hours.
The curtains parted, the music started, and I was instantly amazed at the talent. Act after act showcased the kids, mostly girls but some boys, in such a professional way.
I obviously thought Laura was the most exceptional dancer and have looked at the video I made several times. However, I enjoyed the others just as much. The whole performance was really, really good.
All in all, a good day. I got to spend time with two of my grandchildren doing things that they really liked, even if I never did them myself as a kid.
That’s really how I hope they remember me. “Granddaddy was always there supporting me, no matter what I was doing”. That’s the same way I remember my own Grandfather. Through those memories, I hope I will always be with them.
Dan Ponder can be reached at email@example.com